Columbia Ridge Trail #205
From the junction of this trail with Nipple Mountain Trail #800 on the Gospel-Hump Wilderness boundary, the Columbia Ridge trail follows an open ridge, above Rainbow Lake and Wildhorse Lake, down to Wildhorse Road #233-I, via a primitive road. From this point, the trail joins the road to Orogrande Summit. From the Summit, the trail climbs to the old Columbia Ridge lookout site via a primitive road. The scenic quality at this point is excellent. The traveler can view Buffalo Hump, the Salmon River drainage, Bitterroot Mountains, and peaks in the Idaho Primitive Area. From the old lookout site, the trail follows a timber-covered ridge east down into Big Creek Meadows. It is steep, but levels off in saddles over this 8-mile section. It is not recommended to plan a side trip to Fish Lake via Pete Creek Trail #223, because it is not maintained by the Forest Service and is difficult to follow. In Big Creek Meadows, you cross Big Creek and the Orogrande-Dixie Road #311, then climb a ridge to near Big Creek Point. All the time, you will be traveling through lodgepole pine stands. The trail then drops over this ridge and descends several spur ridges for 2.5 miles to its end on Road #222C.
At a Glance
|Closest Towns:||Elk City, Idaho|
|Water:||Surface - must treat for drinking|
|Information Center:||Red River Ranger District, 208-842-2245|